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Giving back to Kyarumba

Posted: Thu, June 26, 2014 | By: Past Projects

by Douglas Cruickshank

Kyarumba is the Rwenzori Mountains village where I lived for 2-1/2 years and where many of the photographs in Somehow: Living on Uganda Time were taken. While I was working on the book, I was trying to determine how best to repay the people who made my time there so fascinating, happy, and satisfying, many of whom appear in the book’s photographs. I concluded that the most practical and equitable means of repayment is to contribute to projects in Kyarumba, which benefit the people that live there.

this essay was first posted on Douglas’s blog, HERE

What this means is that 50 percent of the $60.00 cover price of the book – $30.00 for each book sold—will go back to Kyarumba to aid worthy institutions and projects there, such as the primary school, a carpentry workshop that trains orphans, or the health center, where many of the women in the area come to deliver their babies. And, over time, there may be other Kyarumba projects that receive funds, based on advice I get from longtime friends who live and work there.

I’m very familiar with all three of the Kyarumba organizations, and the people in charge of them. We’ve effectively raised funds for these projects in the past, using a simple, proven, straightforward method to ensure that 100 percent of the money goes to purchasing essentials: I ask the folks in charge to give me a list of what their organizations need most. I then take the funds raised, buy as much as possible with the money on hand and bring the goods to the organizations.

To get a sense of two of these organizations, take a look at these online photo albums – one of the primary school and one of the carpentry workshop. I posted them awhile back, after the first distribution of donations from U.S. friends. Here are the links — Musasa Primary School and Enos’ KYAAGO Carpentry Training Workshop for Orphans.

If you have you have questions about how this small-time, grass-roots aid effort will operate, feel free to write me - Douglas Cruickshank (Facebook)

Douglas Cruickshank is a writer and photographer. His book, Somehow: Living on Uganda Time, will be published in November 2013. Upcoming projects include two anthologies, Been There, Smashed That and Other Essays about Artists & Writers and Do They Serve Oat Muffins on Doilies in Hell? Travels in a Parallel Universe.


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